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Barranca

I posted the following somewhere else.?

I was R/O on Barranca 73.
Captains Gilbert, Hodges, Dole
C/O Colin Leitch
Engineers I recall , Danny Cunningham, Mick Fulton, Danny Gilmore, Glynn Chilcott.
C/Stwd Len Palin.

We would arrive Galveston, and Gulfport on alternative Sunday afternoons, load Monday mornings, sailing in the afternoon, arriving Puerto Cortes Wednesday.

The container gantry always seemed a problem, if the trim was too ‘steep’ , it couldn’t climb the gradient. The umbilical cable was always falling out of the ‘thingy’.

After my paying off, I went to Plymouth for 6 months during which time I met and stayed with Colin and his wife Trish, I think, in 74 at their home in Teignmouth.
I met up with Glynn in Plymouth about the same time. He had paid off with 3rd degree burns to one hand, an incident with busbars, not on the Barranca.

When I joined, I was informed I would be going to P.Cortes 26 times before pay off. It was difficult not to count down the visits.

Good times, but weren’t they all
 

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I sailed on both the Motagua and Musa when they were with Whitco, Late 70s.
Some great times in Golfito, Cortes, Santa Marta, Genoa, Oslo & Long Beach among others. With I could get in touch with anyone who was around at the time.
Dave Gillies, Electrician.
 

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Manzanares

I was the R/O on the 'Manzanares' late '74 to Jan'75. I can't really remember ANY of the people I sailed with now, as I am now 67 and my memory fading, (along with my hearing!).
I DO remember some 'friends' on board were a tad upset I hadn't informed them that they were NOT to be relieved next port, as they had been led to believe. No amount of explaining that I could NOT divulge any info without express permission of the captain, did not seem to placate them any. I was a LEPER for a short time. Such was the life of the 'sparks'. This was at the time Fyffes were considering employing their own R/O's, as I was offered a job with the company by the said captain, (Brian Hodges), but chose not to accept, due to my upcoming marriage. I DID enjoy my time on the ship however, remembering Xmas with my head over a bucket, whilst sitting on the pan, (in port obviously!).
 

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I relieved an American RO on "Morant" in Genoa. He was a retired RO from the coast stations and hadn't been at sea since WW2. His former coast station had been owned by United Fruit who also owned Fyffes at the time. He was unable to get the transmitter going all the way across the Atlantic. He was supposed to be relieved in Genoa but they couldn't find anyone and said he had to stay. He went to the British Consulate and dobbed himself in as not being a British citizen. The Consulate said he wasn't allowed to sail, that's when I came on the scene as a Freelance. Wish I'd known the story before I joined! They offered me a job too but, although I thought the ship was pretty good, I had other things going on. I was relieved by a Maltese RO - dunno if "Commonwealth" counted as British or not ... maybe Fyffes just hadn't learned. I might have posted about this before.

John T
 

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Manzanares 1975

I remember when I stepped on board the Manzanares at anchor in some small bay, TURBO, Columbia methinks, (My memory is going quick!), there was no R/O to give a handover, he had already bolted! The first thing that the Captain (Brian Hodges) said to me whilst showing me the Radio Room, was "Just you make sure you can operate this equipment son, that's what matters to me". I got the impression he was a little apprehensive of my tender age of 21..maybe he was used to the older R/O's on his vessels! Ah well...most of the gear in the shack was gear I had trained on at Glasgow Nautical College, so no issues there ..... Not that I mentioned that.
One thing he would not accept, as he made absolutely clear later on, was me giving ANY ships movement or crew transfer info received, to the lads on board, but then I was bound by the secrecy of the info anyway, as ALL R/O,s were. Divulge at your peril!
The Purser (Jimmy Bell) had his young son on board this trip, and said youth was in the Radio Room, reading over my shoulder, as I was taking down a message whilst approaching the Panama Canal. Of course he couldn't wait to rush down to the Bar to inform the other guys of this latest info!
I'm sure that lot had put the wee fella up to that. Obviously, the Captain was NOT amused and after a few 'pelters', the Radio Room was to be kept locked and NO-one else allowed in except the Captain. Such is the life of the Sparks, damned if you DO and damned if you DONT!.........
Photo courtesy of Dick Atkin (Dicka)

thumb_Christmas Manzanares -_1024.jpg
 

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Box Hill and Leith Hill

Did anyone sail on the Box Hill or Leith Hill out of New Orleans...one of my mates sailed on the Box Hill...remember him telling me about traveling from New York to New Orleans by train to join the ship
 
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